Posted by: Eric | November 10, 2009

Holga (the camera)

If you have never heard of a Holga, the Holga is a cheap medium format camera with a cult following for its unique “properties.”  Originally designed in Hong Kong in the 80’s, the camera was originally destined for the Chinese market where medium format film was cheap, common and easy to develop (like 35mm film in the U.S.)  The camera became famous for its quirks.  Constructed completely of plastic, even the lens, and with little quality control, every camera is different. The lens is not sharp, vignetting is very prevalent, and light leaks are common.  Why would anyone want this camera in this day of high-end digital cameras and camera phones? Today the Holga can be relatively expensive to operate (despite being so cheap to buy) and the image quality is decidedly sub-par, but the thrill of framing a shot, pulling the trigger, and waiting in anticipation to see what is actually on the film is back in style.  This  “thrill” is what fostered my interest in cameras as a kid. Even though I switched to digital in high school and never really looked back, reliving that wonderment from childhood was a pleasure with this camera.

With all the praise I have given the Holga, you may be wondering why I have only ever shot one roll of film.  It’s because I’m cheap and lazy, but that’s another story! Perhaps with this blog I’ll be inspired to shoot another roll.

If you would like to learn more about Holga, click here.

I received the Holga for Christmas last year, and over New Years Keri and I took a trip to the Stoneridge B&B in Lexington. All of the photos below were taken during this trip.

This is the B&B where we stayed. This wasn't the room we were in or anything (I hope it wasn't anybody's room actually), just a little building on the property.

Inside our room. It was a little dark in there... Actually I learned the hard way the Holga should really only be used outdoors. This was one of two indoor shots that came out at all.

Keri wanted to track down some yarn shop that was just a little further away than BFE.  We found the shop, but not after driving on some gloriously curvy roads and coming across a frozen water mill.

Need some ice? The water was flowing over some nasty looking icicles. It's hard to tell, but most of what is in this picture is actually frozen.

When we finally found the yarn store, it was on a little farm in the middle of nowhere.  The GPS just laughed at us as we tried to find it.  So did the guy who lived next door.

Inside the shop. Aw, their dog looks so nice. No... no... it wasn't.

Keri takes the Holga, and has no idea if the thing even worked. It did.

Back in downtown Lexington, we met a dog that wasn’t trying to maul me.

I've been plotting a way to steal this dog ever since...

And finally… the highlight of the trip…for me anyway…

FOAMHENGE!

Is it religious? Is it art? Is it really made out of foam? More on this in a later post.

Now for some double exposure fun…

You can't do this with a digital. Unless you use Photoshop, but that's cheating!

And finally, the best for last, the other indoor shot that kinda sorta come out…

???

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Responses

  1. hooray for low tech devices! beautiful pictures, Eric! I live black, white and inevitably shades of grey.


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